RESERVE Bank of Zimbabwe governor John Mangudya and Indian ambassador Rungsung Masakui are expected at a smartech symposium to be held next month in Harare aimed at driving economic growth through various new technologies.
Global Renaissance Investment (GRI), which is organising the event, said the conference will come up with ways to harness technology for economic growth. "Digitisation is the new game in town and it is imperative that the country adopts smart technology to grow the economy," GRI chief executive Ngoni Dzirutwe said.
"Most banks have reported profitability in the past year riding on smart technology. This is a testament that the smart technology reduces costs and boost profits for companies. China and India, currently hubs of technology, are exporting more goods because technology has reduced the costs of production for their companies."
This comes as recent research has shown that the positive impact of smart city technologies on economic development could see cities locking in incremental growth of over five percent and driving more than $20 trillion in additional economic benefits globally over the coming decade.
Dzirutwe said it was crucial for Zimbabwe to embrace technology in most facets of the economy to help it achieve its 2030 vision of becoming an upper middle income nation. Transport minister Biggie Matiza recently adopted a smart system at its provisional learning institutes in a move aimed at eliminating corruption and increases efficiency.
"The symposium will also bridge the gap between academia and the private sector. Our university graduates need to be commercially equipped so that the nation becomes self-sustainable in information communication technology (ICT) systems.
"Currently, the country is losing a lot of forex to international ICT companies yet we have got a crop of young innovative graduates who need commercialisation techniques to enable them to compete with the international companies. Smart systems enhances production and efficiency," he said
Dzirutwe noted that Zimbabwe in the long run will benefit from the ICT hubs by being an export hub in the region thus attracting forex in the end.
The event is running under the theme "Smart-tech the new enabler of economic evolution to achieve the 2030 vision".